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CitationNeuropsychologia 2012, 50(6):1151-7
AbstractFollowing brain injury, many patients experience egocentric spatial neglect, where they fail to respond to stimuli on the contralesional side of their body. On the other hand, allocentric, object-based neglect refers to the symptom of ignoring the contralesional side of objects, regardless of the objects' egocentric position. There is an established tradition for considering these two phenomena as both behaviorally and anatomically dissociable. However, several studies and some theoretical work have suggested that these rather reflect two aspects of a unitary underlying disorder. Furthermore, in a recent large study Yue et al. [Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 93 (2012) 156] reported that acute allocentric neglect is only observed in cases where substantial egocentric neglect is also present. In a new sample of right hemisphere stroke patients, we attempted to control for potential confounds by using a novel continuous measure for allocentric neglect (in addition to a recently developed continuous measure for egocentric neglect). Our findings suggest a strong association between egocentric and allocentric neglect. Consistent with the work of Yue et al. (2012), we found allocentric behavioral deficits only in conjunction with egocentric deficits as well as a large corresponding overlap for the anatomical regions associated with egocentric and with allocentric neglect. We discuss how different anatomical and behavioral findings can be explained in a unified physiologically plausible framework, whereby allocentric and egocentric effects interact.
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